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Exodus 17:1-7

1 Then all the congregation of the sons of Israel journeyed by stages from the wilderness of Sin, according to the command of the LORD, and camped at Rephidim, and there was no water for the people to drink. 2 Therefore the people quarreled with Moses and said, “Give us water that we may drink.” And Moses said to them, “Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you test the LORD?” 3 But the people thirsted there for water; and they grumbled against Moses and said, “Why, now, have you brought us up from Egypt, to kill us and our children and our livestock with thirst?” 4 So Moses cried out to the LORD, saying, “What shall I do to this people? A little more and they will stone me.” 5 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Pass before the people and take with you some of the elders of Israel; and take in your hand your staff with which you struck the Nile, and go. 6 “Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock at Horeb; and you shall strike the rock, and water will come out of it, that the people may drink.” And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel. 7 He named the place 1Massah and 2Meribah because of the quarrel of the sons of Israel, and because they tested the LORD, saying, “Is the LORD among us, or not?”

Again, the Israelites just haven’t caught on. God delivered them from Egypt. He parted the Red Sea. He is giving them manna every morning to eat. And now they are complaining about the lack of water. When hardships come, you have two choices: trust God, or complain. Pick the right one.

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Exodus 16:22-36

22 Now on the sixth day they gathered twice as much bread, two omers for each one. When all the leaders of the congregation came and told Moses, 23 then he said to them, “This is what the LORD meant: Tomorrow is a sabbath observance, a holy sabbath to the LORD. Bake what you will bake and boil what you will boil, and all that is left over put aside to be kept until morning.” 24 So they put it aside until morning, as Moses had ordered, and it did not become foul nor was there any worm in it. 25 Moses said, “Eat it today, for today is a sabbath to the LORD; today you will not find it in the field. 26 “Six days you shall gather it, but on the seventh day, the sabbath, there will be none.”

27 It came about on the seventh day that some of the people went out to gather, but they found none. 28 Then the LORD said to Moses, “How long do you refuse to keep My commandments and My 2instructions? 29 “See, the LORD has given you the sabbath; therefore He gives you bread for two days on the sixth day. Remain every man in his place; let no man go out of his place on the seventh day.” 30 So the people rested on the seventh day.

31 The house of Israel named it manna, and it was like coriander seed, white, and its taste was like wafers with honey. 32 Then Moses said, “This is what the LORD has commanded, `Let an omerful of it be kept throughout your generations, that they may see the bread that I fed you in the wilderness, when I brought you out of the land of Egypt.'” 33 Moses said to Aaron, “Take a jar and put an omerful of manna in it, and place it before the LORD to be kept throughout your generations.” 34 As the LORD commanded Moses, so Aaron placed it before the Testimony, to be kept. 35 The sons of Israel ate the manna forty years, until they came to an inhabited land; they ate the manna until they came to the border of the land of Canaan. 36 (Now an omer is a tenth of an ephah.)

I’m guilty of this probably just as much as anyone else, but this passage is all about resting. God created the Sabbath day for man, and He intended it to be a day of rest. He provided extra manna the day before, just so they could rest the following day. So, it is no surprise that God was upset with the few who wandered out to gather manna when they were supposed to be resting. Don’t forget to take a Sabbath, and if you can, follow God’s plan, and do it every week.

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Exodus 16:8-21

8 Moses said, “This will happen when the LORD gives you meat to eat in the evening, and bread to the full in the morning; for the LORD hears your grumblings which you grumble against Him. And what are we? Your grumblings are not against us but against the LORD.”

9 Then Moses said to Aaron, “Say to all the congregation of the sons of Israel, `Come near before the LORD, for He has heard your grumblings.'” 10 It came about as Aaron spoke to the whole congregation of the sons of Israel, that they looked toward the wilderness, and behold, the glory of the LORD appeared in the cloud. 11 And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 12 “I have heard the grumblings of the sons of Israel; speak to them, saying, `At twilight you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall be filled with bread; and you shall know that I am the LORD your God.'”

13 So it came about at evening that the quails came up and covered the camp, and in the morning there was a layer of dew around the camp. 14 When the layer of dew evaporated, behold, on the surface of the wilderness there was a fine flake-like thing, fine as the frost on the ground. 15 When the sons of Israel saw it, they said to one another, “What is it?” For they did not know what it was. And Moses said to them, “It is the bread which the LORD has given you to eat. 16 “This is what the LORD has commanded, `Gather of it every man as much as he should eat; you shall take an omer apiece according to the number of persons each of you has in his tent.'” 17The sons of Israel did so, and some gathered much and some little. 18 When they measured it with an omer, he who had gathered much had no excess, and he who had gathered little had no lack; every man gathered as much as he should eat. 19 Moses said to them, “Let no man leave any of it until morning.” 20 But they did not listen to Moses, and some left part of it until morning, and it bred worms and became foul; and Moses was angry with them. 21 They gathered it morning by morning, every man as much as he should eat; but when the sun grew hot, it would melt.

It amazes me that, no matter how clear the instructions are, someone will always not follow them. Most of the Israelites did what they were told. They left nothing of the manna until morning. A few were stubborn, and did not trust God to provide the next day. They received a lovely surprise when they woke up the next morning. When God asks you to do something, there’s always a reason. Don’t try to take matters into your own hands, or you might end up with a smelly wormy mess.

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Exodus 16:1-7

1 Then they set out from Elim, and all the congregation of the sons of Israel came to the wilderness of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after their departure from the land of Egypt. 2 The whole congregation of the sons of Israel grumbled against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness. 3The sons of Israel said to them, “Would that we had died by the LORD’S hand in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the pots of meat, when we ate bread to the full; for you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.”

4 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you; and the people shall go out and gather a day’s portion every day, that I may test them, whether or not they will walk in My 1instruction. 5 “On the sixth day, when they prepare what they bring in, it will be twice as much as they gather daily.” 6 So Moses and Aaron said to all the sons of Israel, “At evening you will know that the LORD has brought you out of the land of Egypt; 7 and in the morning you will see the glory of the LORD, for He hears your grumblings against the LORD; and what are we, that you grumble against us?”

Again with the grumbling. But God is patient, and He knows our human frailty. When you have a problem, take it to Him. Don’t just grumble to others about your suffering and hardship. Take it to God, He can handle it.

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Exodus 15:22-27

22 Then Moses led Israel from the Red Sea, and they went out into the wilderness of Shur; and they went three days in the wilderness and found no water. 23 When they came to Marah, they could not drink the waters of Marah, for they were bitter; therefore it was named 2Marah. 24 So the people grumbled at Moses, saying, “What shall we drink?” 25 Then he cried out to the LORD, and the LORD showed him a tree; and he threw it into the waters, and the waters became sweet.

There He made for them a statute and regulation, and there He tested them. 26 And He said, “If you will give earnest heed to the voice of the LORD your God, and do what is right in His sight, and give ear to His commandments, and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have put on the Egyptians; for I, the LORD, am your healer.”

27 Then they came to Elim where there were twelve springs of water and seventy date palms, and they camped there beside the waters.

It’s pretty amazing how quick they forgot about God. Just days before, they had been singing praises about how mighty He was. Now, when they needed water, who could give it to them? Did they ask? No, they just grumbled. Don’t be a grumbler. God can take care of anything. Don’t forget about Him, through the good and bad.

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Exodus 15:19-21

19 For the horses of Pharaoh with his chariots and his horsemen went into the sea, and the LORD brought back the waters of the sea on them, but the sons of Israel walked on dry land through the midst of the sea.

20 Miriam the prophetess, Aaron’s sister, took the timbrel in her hand, and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dancing. 21 Miriam answered them,

“Sing to the LORD, for He is highly exalted;
The horse and his rider He has hurled into the sea.”

After God delivered the Israelites from the hand of Pharaoh, there was much rejoicing. The men wrote a whole song, and then Miriam led the women out with a song of praise. They wanted to make sure God knew they were grateful for what He had done. Do we always remember to thank Him for what He has done? What is our response when He answers our prayers? Don’t forget to thank God, and tell everyone you know of His awesome works.

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Exodus 15:1-18

1 Then Moses and the sons of Israel sang this song to the LORD, and said,

“I will sing to the LORD, for He is highly exalted;
The horse and its rider He has hurled into the sea.
2 “The LORD is my strength and song,
And He has become my salvation;
This is my God, and I will praise Him;
My father’s God, and I will extol Him.
3 “The LORD is a warrior;
The LORD is His name.
4 “Pharaoh’s chariots and his army He has cast into the sea;
And the choicest of his officers are drowned in the 1Red Sea.
5 “The deeps cover them;
They went down into the depths like a stone.
6 “Your right hand, O LORD, is majestic in power,
Your right hand, O LORD, shatters the enemy.
7 “And in the greatness of Your excellence You overthrow those who rise up against You;
You send forth Your burning anger, and it consumes them as chaff.
8 “At the blast of Your nostrils the waters were piled up,
The flowing waters stood up like a heap;
The deeps were congealed in the heart of the sea.
9 “The enemy said, `I will pursue, I will overtake, I will divide the spoil;
My desire shall be gratified against them;
I will draw out my sword, my hand will destroy them.’
10 “You blew with Your wind, the sea covered them;
They sank like lead in the mighty waters.
11 “Who is like You among the gods, O LORD?
Who is like You, majestic in holiness,
Awesome in praises, working wonders?
12 “You stretched out Your right hand,
The earth swallowed them.
13 “In Your lovingkindness You have led the people whom You have redeemed;
In Your strength You have guided them to Your holy habitation.
14 “The peoples have heard, they tremble;
Anguish has gripped the inhabitants of Philistia.
15 “Then the chiefs of Edom were dismayed;
The leaders of Moab, trembling grips them;
All the inhabitants of Canaan have melted away.
16 “Terror and dread fall upon them;
By the greatness of Your arm they are motionless as stone;
Until Your people pass over, O LORD,
Until the people pass over whom You have purchased.
17 “You will bring them and plant them in the mountain of Your inheritance,
The place, O LORD, which You have made for Your dwelling,
The sanctuary, O Lord, which Your hands have established.
18 “The LORD shall reign forever and ever.”

Who is like the Lord? That’s the one line that stands out to me. There’s a song that answers it quite well. “There is no one.” God is amazing, and His love never fails. He protects those who trust in Him, and guides their path. Put your faith in Him, and be not discouraged. The Lord is mighty and faithful.

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Exodus 14:21-31

21 Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the LORD swept the sea back by a strong east wind all night and turned the sea into dry land, so the waters were divided. 22 The sons of Israel went through the midst of the sea on the dry land, and the waters were like a wall to them on their right hand and on their left. 23 Then the Egyptians took up the pursuit, and all Pharaoh’s horses, his chariots and his horsemen went in after them into the midst of the sea. 24 At the morning watch, the LORD looked down on the army of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and cloud and brought the army of the Egyptians into confusion. 25 He caused their chariot wheels to swerve, and He made them drive with difficulty; so the Egyptians said, “Let us flee from Israel, for the LORD is fighting for them against the Egyptians.”

26 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the sea so that the waters may come back over the Egyptians, over their chariots and their horsemen.” 27 So Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and the sea returned to its normal state at daybreak, while the Egyptians were fleeing right into it; then the LORD overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea. 28 The waters returned and covered the chariots and the horsemen, even Pharaoh’s entire army that had gone into the sea after them; not even one of them remained. 29But the sons of Israel walked on dry land through the midst of the sea, and the waters were like a wall to them on their right hand and on their left.

30 Thus the LORD saved Israel that day from the hand of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians dead on the seashore. 31 When Israel saw the great power which the LORD had used against the Egyptians, the people feared the LORD, and they believed in the LORD and in His servant Moses.

We seem to skip over the part where God actually confused the Egyptians to the point that they turned back in their pursuit of the Israelites. At that point, God had won the battle. The Israelites were safe, and the Egyptians were running homeward. But God didn’t stop there. He wanted to make sure that the Israelites (and the Egyptians) never forgot His power. That is why he vanquished the enemy completely on that day. He wanted no doubt to remain that He could save them from any situation, and that the Israelites could trust Him completely. Indeed, it is a reminder to us today that we can trust Him completely. He won’t just swat at our problems and make them go away for a while. He will take care of us completely.

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Exodus 14:13-20

13 But Moses said to the people, “Do not fear! Stand by and see the salvation of the LORD which He will accomplish for you today; for the Egyptians whom you have seen today, you will never see them again forever.14 “The LORD will fight for you while you keep silent.”

15 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to Me? Tell the sons of Israel to go forward. 16 “As for you, lift up your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, and the sons of Israel shall go through the midst of the sea on dry land. 17 “As for Me, behold, I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians so that they will go in after them; and I will be honored through Pharaoh and all his army, through his chariots and his horsemen.18 “Then the Egyptians will know that I am the LORD, when I am honored through Pharaoh, through his chariots and his horsemen.”

19 The angel of God, who had been going before the camp of Israel, moved and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud moved from before them and stood behind them. 20 So it came between the camp of Egypt and the camp of Israel; and there was the cloud along with the darkness, yet it gave light at night. Thus the one did not come near the other all night.

When it seems like the enemy is closing in upon us, if we will seek the Lord, He will protect us. He will not let His children be destroyed by the enemy, but He will gather them like a hen gathers her chicks. God sent His son to die for us. He certainly values us more than enough to want to keep us safe. But we must keep our eyes on Him, and obey His commands.

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Exodus 14:1-12

1 Now the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 2 “Tell the sons of Israel to turn back and camp before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea; you shall camp in front of Baal-zephon, opposite it, by the sea. 3 “For Pharaoh will say of the sons of Israel, `They are wandering aimlessly in the land; the wilderness has shut them in.’ 4 “Thus I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and he will chase after them; and I will be honored through Pharaoh and all his army, and the Egyptians will know that I am the LORD.” And they did so.

5 When the king of Egypt was told that the people had fled, Pharaoh and his servants had a change of heart toward the people, and they said, “What is this we have done, that we have let Israel go from serving us?” 6 So he made his chariot ready and took his people with him; 7 and he took six hundred select chariots, and all theother chariots of Egypt with officers over all of them. 8 The LORD hardened the heart of Pharaoh, king of Egypt, and he chased after the sons of Israel as the sons of Israel were going out boldly. 9 Then the Egyptians chased after them with all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh, his horsemen and his army, and they overtook them camping by the sea, beside Pi-hahiroth, in front of Baal-zephon.

10 As Pharaoh drew near, the sons of Israel looked, and behold, the Egyptians were marching after them, and they became very frightened; so the sons of Israel cried out to the LORD. 11 Then they said to Moses, “Is it because there were no graves in Egypt that you have taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you dealt with us in this way, bringing us out of Egypt? 12 “Is this not the word that we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, `Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.”

The insecurity of the Israelites is always amazing, but I suppose we’re not much different today. God had just delivered them from Egypt by killing the firstborn children of all the Egyptians. Just days later, now they are afraid of Pharaoh and his army. Let us not forget the things that God has done, lest we be swayed by the winds and currents of the world. Stand firm, and know in Whom you believe.